As our Dennis Santiago reported, campaigning in the Golden State's gubernatorial recall election turned violent Wednesday when a woman in a gorilla mask threw an egg at Republican candidate Larry Elder as he attempted to visit homeless encampments in Los Angeles' Venice Beach area. The woman also threw a punch at one of Elder's bodyguards.
Spectrum News LA's Kate Cagle caught it on video:
Breaking: A flying egg narrowly missed the back of recall candidate @larryelder's head after it was thrown by an activist wearing a gorilla mask in Venice. A scuffle broke out and the candidate was escorted into an SUV.
— Kate Cagle (@KateCagle) September 8, 2021
Watching Cagle's raw video, it looks like the woman rides up to the group quickly, then the bald man joins her. For those who've watched the videos coming out of Venice Beach for the last 18+ months, this guy looks familiar as one who's been involved in a few videotaped incidents.
And who is the woman at the :37 mark, seemingly smirking at the camera?
Obviously, the symbolism of someone wearing a gorilla mask and accosting a black man running for governor isn't positive. And, if Elder were a Democrat, and if it could be argued that the woman in the gorilla mask was a Republican and, therefore, a white supremacist (even though she could have just been a terrible human being), well, we all know how that news cycle would go. It would consist of endless segments on MSNBC and CNN about the scourge of white supremacy, and how despicable Republicans are. Spineless Republicans like Ben Sasse and Adam Kinzinger would be wringing their hands before Jake Tapper, attempting to distance themselves from all Republicans while saying that all Republicans are complicit in the attack.
But, since Elder is a Republican, and because the media can just claim the woman in the gorilla mask was either a drug addict or mentally ill (therefore, the gorilla mask had no racial meaning at all), the response from most of the mainstream media and by elected Democrats has been… you guessed it… crickets.
Freelance journalist Andy Ngo was one who called out racism.
A violent woman wearing a racist gorilla mask throws a projectile at @larryelder’s head (& misses) in Los Angeles. She then punches someone in his crew. Other left-wing protesters join in on the attack. pic.twitter.com/JXm2aRmDDY
— Andy Ngô 🏳️🌈 (@MrAndyNgo) September 8, 2021
Comedian Tim Young reminded the FBI that an investigation was opened to investigate a “noose” in Bubba Wallace's garage with far less evidence to go on.
15 FBI agents were sent to look at a garage pulley in Bubba Wallace's garage… How many will be sent to investigate the chick who dressed like a gorilla and threw eggs at Larry Elder? 1 junior officer?
— Tim Young (@TimRunsHisMouth) September 9, 2021
Writers at the Los Angeles Times could only bring themselves to label it a “hostile reception” after calling Larry Elder “the black face of white supremacy.” You know, an Uncle Tom. Oh, and that he cut his encampment tour short. Please tell us, Los Angeles Times, how often Gavin Newsom has been to homeless encampments in Venice or Santa Monica?
The newspaper that called Larry Elder a "white supremacist" in a headline now refuses to state in a headline that a white person wearing a monkey mask attacked him. https://t.co/wwgV8FMt4s
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) September 8, 2021
One Los Angeles news anchor, FOX Los Angeles' Elex Michaelson, got it right, calling out the attack as “ugly and wrong.”
The attacks on @larryelder were ugly & wrong.
Regardless of your political perspective, there should be a place for a respectful debate free of violence.
They are also a reminder that we have a long way to go to deal with homelessness, addiction & mental health in Venice.
— Elex Michaelson (@Elex_Michaelson) September 9, 2021
Elder told Fox LA's Phil Shuman that he wasn't surprised by the anger he was confronted with:
“I've been down to Skid Row. People are frustrated. People are angry.
“Many of them are mentally ill. They've been trained and taught that anybody who is Black, who's got a ‘R' at the end of their name is a villain… that's what the left has done. They've divided this country.”
That was magnanimous of Elder, and clearly many of the homeless on Los Angeles's streets are there because they have an untreated mental illness or drug addiction. Others are there because they stir up anger and keep those with mental illness or drug addiction from accepting help (such as what happened at the city's Echo Park Lake encampment earlier in 2021), because the more “unhoused” people there are on the streets, the more money is thrown at the problem.
Regardless, what happened to Larry Elder on Wednesday was pure racism (if you don't believe it, try picturing the same events happening to any of the white Republican candidates for governor – and they didn't during Caitlyn Jenner's visit), and anyone who doesn't call it out is complicit.